Rediscovering the Joy of Cooking

September 10, 2009

Lobster Pot Pie

Filed under: main dish, seafood — Emily @ 10:00 am

My family has a tradition of making lobster for Christmas Eve dinner. Pretty non-traditional, but it’s a nice change from the meat and potatoes Christmas dinner that we eat the next day. We turned to this recipe one year after having some lobster leftovers. This recipe is decadent–and totally to die for! It is SO unbelievable good. Excuse this picture—it’s not the best, I had to take it quickly with my crappy camera.

Lobster Pot Pie

  • 1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion (1 large onion)
  • 3/4 cup chopped fennel (1 fennel bulb)
  • 1/4 pound unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 cups fish stock or clam juice
  • 1 tablespoon Pernod
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 3/4 pound cooked fresh lobster meat
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen peas (not “baby” peas)
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen small whole onions
  • 1/2 cup minced flat-leaf parsley


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 8 tablespoons cold fresh lard, diced (1/4 pound)
  • 8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup ice water
  • 1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water or heavy cream, for egg wash


Saute the onions and fennel with the butter in a large saute pan on medium heat until the onions are translucent, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the flour and cook on low heat for 3 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Slowly add the stock, Pernod, salt, and pepper and simmer for 5 more minutes. Add the heavy cream.

Cut the lobster meat into medium-sized cubes. Place the lobster, frozen peas, frozen onions, and parsley in a bowl (there is no need to defrost the vegetables). Pour the sauce over the mixture and check the seasonings. Set aside.

For the crust, mix the flour, salt, and baking powder in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add the lard and butter and pulse 10 times, until the fat is the size of peas. With the motor running, add the ice water; process only enough to moisten the dough and have it just come together. Dump the dough out on a floured surface and knead quickly into a ball. Wrap the dough in plastic and allow it to rest for 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Divide the dough in half and roll out each half to fit a 9 or 9 1/2-inch round by 2-inch high ovenproof glass or ceramic baking dish. Place 1 crust in the dish, fill with the lobster mixture, and top with the second crust. Crimp the crusts together and brush with the egg wash. Make 4 or 5 slashes in the top crust and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot.

Source: Ina Garten


September 2, 2009

Easy Sole Meuniere

Filed under: fish, main dish, seafood — Emily @ 8:00 am

After seeing the movie Julie & Julia, I was really inspired to cook! In her book, My Life in France (which I also promptly read after seeing the movie), Julia Child’s talks about the first meal she had after arriving in France. On the road to Paris from the boat docks, she and her husband, Paul, stopped at a restaurant where Julia ordered sole meuniere. It was this meal that forever changed her outlook on food and life and inspired her to pursue French cooking. She referred to this meal as “the greatest meal of my life.” I felt it was appropriate to make this meal after seeing the movie! While I have purchased her Mastering the Art of French Cooking, I decided to make Ina Garten’s recipe which is a pretty simple one. While I wouldn’t go so far as to say this was the “best meal of my life” (I was a little overzealous on the lemon)—it was definitely tasty!

Easy Sole Meuniere

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 fresh sole fillets, 3 to 4 ounces each

6 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (3 lemons)

1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Have 2 heat-proof dinner plates ready.

Combine the flour, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper in a large shallow plate. Pat the sole fillets dry with paper towels and sprinkle one side with salt.

Heat 3 tablespoons of the butter in a large (12-inch) saute pan over medium heat until it starts to brown. Dredge 2 sole fillets in the seasoned flour on both sides and place them in the hot butter. Lower the heat to medium-low and cook for 2 minutes. Turn carefully with a metal spatula and cook for 2 minutes on the other side. While the second side cooks, add 1/2 teaspoon of the lemon zest and 3 tablespoons of the lemon juice to the pan. Carefully put the fish fillets on the ovenproof plates and pour the sauce over them. Keep the cooked fillets warm in the oven while you repeat the process with the reamining 2 fillets. When they’re done, add the cooked fillets to the plates in the oven. Sprinkle with the parsley, salt, and pepper and serve immediately.

Source: Ina Garten

Stay tuned! Tomorrow I will share the side dish recipes that I served along with this sole meuniere to make it an incredibly delicious and authentic French meal!

August 16, 2009

Grilled Mahimahi with Mild Red Thai Curry Sauce

Filed under: fish, main dish, seafood — Emily @ 8:00 am

This was absolutely delicious! I served it on a bed of sauteed corn and shiitake mushrooms and it was perfect. You can also use this sauce for grilled chicken, shrimp or whatever else sounds good to you.

Grilled Mahimahi with Mild Red Thai Curry Sauce

Serves: 4

3 tablespoons peanut oil

1 garlic clove, minced

1 1/2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger

2 teaspoons curry powder

2 teaspoons Thai red curry sauce

2 teaspoons paprika

3/4 teaspoons ground cumin

2 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons tomato puree

2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar

1 14-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk

4 mahimahi filets (8 ounces each)

Olive oil, for grilling

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Prepare the grill. Measure all the ingredients and have them ready by the stove. In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and ginger, and cook for 1 minute. Reduce the heat to low, and add the curry powder, curry paste, paprika, and cumin. Stir and cook for 2 minutes.

Raise the heat back to medium, and add the soy sauce, tomato puree, brown sugar, and coconut milk, whisking well after each addition. When small bubbles form around the edge of the saucepan, simmer very gently for 10 minutes, whisking frequently. Do not allow it to boil.

Brush the mahimahi with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and grill until cooked through. Serve immediately with the sauce.

Source: At Blanchard’s Table

September 20, 2008

King Crab Dinner

Filed under: seafood — Emily @ 10:46 pm

I recently went to our local Ralph’s supermarket and discovered that they had awesome looking King crab legs for $13.99/lb! What a deal! So that Friday night Aaron and I decided to make our own instead of paying top-dollar for going to a seafood restaurant. We both love crab legs! We topped off our meal with corn on the cob seasoned with Old Bay and a baked potato with Sargento Baked Potato Topper (the au gratin version). It was a perfect meal.

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